Recently I have been asked the same question by a number academics..
how to try to make teaching programming interesting?
As we all know one of the key things of learning is it has to be interesting, so simply getting students to use notepad to code isn't interesting and students will become quickly disengaged or simply turn off.
So why not try to make things more interesting and teach them how to program a browser-based game, Key goals are the outcome is cross-platform compatible and also build upon some the skills your students may already have, in terms of web design and may also be really stimulating and of use to them in extra curricula activities so with these factors I am sure they would be really interested in learning more.
What's great about teaching HTML5
In terms of curricula you can teach canvas element, audio and video implementation, event handling, form input validation and the usage of information storing. These are all new functions in HTML5.
And you can even develop your course curricula as a learning journey.
Week 2. Programming these functions followed by drawing the animation using the canvas element.
Week 3. Using the canvas element,
Week 4. Create the game logics (including the collision engine)
Week 5. Using form input validation and adding some AI such as basic artificial gravity.
Week 7. You can use HTML5`s local storage API.
Week 8. Develop a game uses and which includes the above and have a mini challenge between the students.